João Correia’s day job in 2010 will require a different uniform than the one he wore in 2009 as Bicycling’s associate publisher. Cervélo TestTeam signed Correia — who also moonlighted for Bissell in 2008 and 2009 — for the coming season.
Correia began racing bikes as a kid in Portugal, and went on to ride professionally for a Portugese team, Troiamariscos, in 1995 and for a Dutch team, Europolis, in 1996. He left cycling for college, which led to a career in publishing. Now, he’s going back to where it began.
“I am excited and humbled to be riding with Cervélo TestTeam this season,” said Correia. “This is exciting opportunity for me to do what I really want to do. It’s been a tough road back to this level after leaving the sport in the mid-90s but I feel that the work I put in at Bissell in the last two years have given me a solid foundation to try and make the jump back into the upper echelons of the sport. With this team I have found people who share similar values to mine and who believe in me. They are very committed to making the world of cycling a better sport for athletes, sponsors and fans alike and I’d like to add my small part to help them do that.”
Correia stepped down from his position at Rodale publishing, and will be temporarily be moving from New York City to Europe, where the training opportunities will be a bit greater than Correia’s old haunt of Central Park.
Gerard Vroomen, co founder of Cervélo, brought a unique perspective to professional cycling when his company started the TestTeam. Beyond their duties on the bike, riders are expected to be a part of the team’s corporate outreach, being on hand for various hospitality events. At the Giro d’Italia, for example, Cervélo rider Dominique Rollin accompanied a group of VIPs throughout the week.
“We’ve known João for some time, and we actually first discussed this idea a few years ago,” Vroomen. “Now the time is right to actually do it. No doubt it will be a difficult transition for him, but we’re not in a rush. And of course, besides his cycling talent and drive he brings a unique perspective to the pursuit of our other team goals: product development, fan access and hospitality.”